Home > Consistency, Tri Posts > Month In Review (or “why my Give-A-Shit is broken, and that’s ok”)

Month In Review (or “why my Give-A-Shit is broken, and that’s ok”)

February 28, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments


Hmm… over 2 weeks since my last post, huh?  As goes my training, so goes my posting, apparently…

Looking at it purely through the lens of “Triathlon Training”, my February has been shit a bit inconsistent.  I’ve made it to a few training sessions, but have easily missed just as many.  Excuses?  You betcha!  I got loads of ’em:


  • It’s cold, and dark, and miserable outside
  • Work is busy.  Not drowning-in-overtime busy, but full-intense-days busy such that all I want to do when I get home is collapse on the couch.  But I can’t, because…
  • This volunteering gig I’ve signed up for is taking a lot of time and energy.  It’s like a second part-time job on top of my day job.  It’s an amazing experience (in fact, probably worthy of it’s own blog post… which I should do…), but it eats into my time

Yep – excuses.  The result of which being that my February sucked as far as training months go!  m’ohwell.

Should I be more upset about it?  Maybe.  But my Give-A-Shit is kinda broken right now.  And that’s okay.  I’m really trying to put it in perspective.  What should I be upset about?  About missing a bunch of sessions from a training plan that I took from a website, that isn’t personalized to me whatsoever, and that is almost 100% more intense than the plan I followed last year?  All while I’m working a different job than last year, living in a different city, and dealing with a distinctly colder and snowier winter?

Maybe I should be upset about that.  But I’m not gonna be.

So what lens should I look at it from?  Instead of comparing myself to a random training plan online (or to an ideal I picked up somewhere that all age group triathletes need to be training 7-10 hours per week, regardless of background, goals, or race distances planned), let’s try comparing myself to… myself:

Here’s my training volume so far in 2014 (left), compared to so far in 2013 (right):

MIR 1402to1302

The overall volume this year is a bit lower, though not embarrassingly lower.  Last year at this time I was training for my first half marathon in late February, and a 30km running race in late March.  This year I don’t have running-specific races on the horizon (or any specific races on the horizon), so my training is much more balanced and less urgent.  My bike effort is much improved.  My swim and strength efforts are marginally improved.  My run effort was holding it’s own in January – has slid a little in February, admittedly, but hasn’t fallen off completely.  There’s a base there.  I can still build on that!

(Shout out to one of my favorite blogs: A Promise to Dad, for the inspiration to contrast 2014 YTD vs 2013 YTD.  What a great way to look at my training, rather than solely comparing it to an arbitrary training plan!  Thanks 🙂 )

What other lenses can I look at it through?

  • I’m ~10lbs lighter than I was this time last year
  • My waste size is 4″ smaller than it was last year
  • I’m running at a 6:15/km pace reliably, where last year I was between 7:00/km and 7:30/km

None of those measures are by themselves earth shattering changes over the course of a year.  But progress is progress, and every time I get down on myself that I missed a single training session, I need to remember that over the course of a year I’m trending in the right direction.  It’s all about long term gains, not short term pains!


image from theBERRY

Happy End-of-February Everybody!  Spring is just around the corner!!!

  1. February 28, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Hey, thanks for the shout-out! Since I still cannot run, I have to find the positives (and it’s been tough sometimes) . . . I had no idea my numbers were so much better this year, I thought maybe a few miles here and there–but WOE! That made my shitty week a little bit better 🙂 WHOO HOOO! AND! It looks like it made your week a little bit better, too.

    Thank goodness February is almost over. Yesterday I was getting really grouchy. I stopped on the way back to work after lunch for popcorn and a soda (to go with my lunch of a Cool Mint Chocolate Clif bar) and the lady behind the counter said something that not only made me smile, but change my perspective for the rest of the day. That was big. Because the rest of my day lasted another 8 hours at work for a grand total of a 12.5 hour day.

    I’m a professor. I thought we were supposed to be lazy and overpaid? Neither works for me! LOL!

    • March 1, 2014 at 8:35 am

      Cheers to February being over indeed. Here’s to a better March for both of us!

      • March 1, 2014 at 8:53 am

        Right back at you !!

  2. February 28, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    Sorry to hear you are having a bad go at it this year. Way to stay positive through the adversity Just stick with it and things will get better.

    • March 1, 2014 at 8:36 am

      I wouldn’t say I’ve had a bad go at it this year – perhaps more that I’m re-evaluating expectations. But I agree – positive attitude and keep pushing. There’s still several feet of snow on the ground here – race season isn’t for a few months yet!

  3. March 1, 2014 at 6:58 am

    It makes more sense for you to compare your training volumes that way then to the internet plan, I think. If the internet plan isn’t realistic for you, find one that is!

    • March 1, 2014 at 8:38 am

      I think you’re right, but I struggle with it. It’s a plan that *should* be realistic for me. I don’t think I’m quite ready to abandon it yet. I’d rather have a plan that is a realistic stretch, than one that is deliberately easily achievable. I’m still hoping this plan is the former…

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: